Did you know that the teeth’s sensitivity to hot or cold has something to do with the dental pulp? It is a mass of cells and connective tissues at the center of the tooth. Although it appears relatively small, it is considered a very important part because it gives life to the tooth.
A damaged pulp is the cause of tooth pain and sensitivity, which is most apparent when a person takes hot or cold drinks and food. Bacterial infection is the pathway to pulp damage. Bacteria can get into the pulp through cracks or trauma and tooth decay. A damaged pulp can then lead to gum swelling, teeth discolouration and formation of abscess.
The dental specialty that is dedicated to the study and treatment of the dental pulp is called endodontics. The most common endodotic procedure many people undergo is the root canal therapy. This procedure allows an endodontist to fix the damaged pulp within and save the tooth from total decay. How is that? Firstly, the endodontist drills into the pulp chamber and removes the damaged pulp. Then, the endodontist drills the nerve out of the root canal. Both are made possible by needle-like tools. Even though the pulp and the nerves are the lifelines of the teeth, the teeth, especially those that have matured, can survive without them.
Generally, root canal therapy cannot be completed in one sitting. A patient will have to come back for a couple of sessions more depending on the endodontist’s advice. The procedure has to be done until all damaged nerves are removed. Afterwards, the fixed tooth will have to be capped or sealed to keep bacteria from slipping into the root canal.
If you need a quick reminder of all the details discussed above, the infographic below gives an explanation about what endodontics is.